The Mancunion

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Review: Jon Richardson

Stephanie Scott reviews Jon Richardson’s stand-up performance at The Lowry


Jon Richardson is one of my favourite current comics so, I must warn you, this review is probably a little bit biased. A week and a half before going to see him perform at The Lowry, I went to see 8 Out of 10 Cats: Countdown being filmed just across the road, and almost peed myself when we were seated in the front row AND Jon gave me a little nod as he walked on to set. I am a self-proclaimed Jon Richardson Fan-Girl – which might be relatively strange considering Richardson’s brand of self-deprecating comedy. Perhaps that says something about me. I digress. On with the review.

As a comic, Richardson is known for laughing at himself and especially at his fussy, overly neat, tidy and organised lifestyle and, as an extension of this, apparent relationship-repellence. Now living with his girlfriend in London, this comedic approach may have come off as slightly false, so Richardson has taken a new angle in the material on his current tour. He starts by announcing that he has recently become happy, and throughout the show his material depicts how he has reached this state of happiness. Richardson’s comedy really is for pretty much anyone – although there was one mention of ‘teabagging’, he doesn’t use sex as punchline, or attempt to be controversial for cheap laughs as many contemporary popular comedians often do. Reviewing a stand-up comedy show is difficult as I don’t want to spoil any punchlines for those seeing the show in the future, but I must cryptically mention that Jeff is a very funny name and Boris Johnson really is like a wet fart.

Although still self-deprecating and self-reflectively funny, Richardson acknowledges changes in his life through observational comedy and allows the audience to follow a somewhat enlightening journey, on which the comedian realises that hating everything isn’t going to make him happier, and sometimes it is ok to have fun and let yourself experience new relationships. Basically, the show has a relatively uplifting end, as well as a slightly beneficial message. As Richardson himself commented, happy people can be incredibly tedious, but tedium was definitely not an element of Richardson’s show as he maintained energy and presence throughout. Although he did seem pretty happy. What a bastard.

5 out of 5 stars